Wednesday, 11 November 2015

Why I smashed the television

The other day I knocked-over the television and it landed on something sharp which smashed the screen - although with a modern TV, with a thin screen made of some kind of plastic stuff, you could only see the smash with the power switched on. A rather horrible sight.

The cause was a stupid random mistake - a foot wrongly placed, a momentary loss of balance... But no the mistake wasn't random, but almost inevitable - the 'accident' was the culmination of a series of determined haste, unforced errors, unnecessary compromises, a perfect storm of the interaction of my attitude and cumulative care-less-ness.

I had a lot of chores to do in a limited time; and I did them by taking an antagonistic attitude towards the world - it was me against that world. I literally as well as metaphorically 'put my head down', closed-in on myself, kindled my will - and attempted to cut a swathe through the tasks ahead.

I was busy, I was in a hurry - pushing to complete one after another thing. I had to move the TV away from the job I was doing, but I didn't move it far enough. I needed to stand on a chair to reach the curtain rail - but I didn't quite get the chair to where it ideally ought to be - because the TV was in the way. I unclipped the curtain in an irritated and hasty mood, because I was having to re-do it.

I stepped backward off the chair; felt a bump and heard a crash.

Because I had set myself against the world I was deprived of that harmonious cooperation with the world which is the only thing that gets us through the near-infinite hazards and pitfalls of life - perhaps I even antagonized the world (not all objects are benign - some are just looking for an excuse to get us - some are even more irritable than I).

It has happened before - no doubt it will happen again: it is all about attitude. When I feel 'hassled', rushed, over busy, tired... and am pushing and pushing to impose my will on recalcitrant reality: that's when 'accidents' happen - and the worst ones, the irrevocable ones that cost far more than the price of a new TV.

When will I learn to recognize that mood? - and instead of doubling down and closing-off - to ease my foot off the gas, open my senses and my self to communication with the world - to perceive the proper and harmonious path through reality rather than trying to hack my way through the densest part of jungle with a blunt machete wielded with unhelpful urgency by tiring, uncertain, uncoordinated arms?

P.S. The illustration is not of my actual TV, but it looked pretty similar.